Where ARE you going with this?

Sticking with our questioning theme this month, lets talk about results BOTH from our salesperson perspective and the prospect/customer’s perspective.

from the salesperson perspective….

As salespeople we know that there is lots & lots of information we need to

  • do they buy what we sell
  • do they need what we do
  • what does it take to become a vendor
  • what is important to them
  • how am I different than the people they use now
  • how often do they buy what I sell
  • who in their organization plays a role
  • who is in the purchasing process
  • what are they trying to accomplish

and the list goes on & on & on & on!

From a telesales perspective, please remember that we have multiple micro conversations vs. hour long meetings! So go into it with the assumption that:

  1. you will NEVER find out everything in that single call
  2. you WILL talk with them again

My suggestion is to have a single objective for a call – that one nugget of information or step forward you want to take in the sales process.

Need an example?

  • find out what Bob’s role is
  • understand how many projects they have each quarter
  • figure out how the purchasing process works
  • determine who in the XYZ organization will block my involvement
    (notice I didn’t include additional questions like “why” or “how do I get around it” ~ believe me, we want to know that as well….
    keep to ONE objective per call

… of course if the person you’re speaking with is ready to continue the conversation KEEP GOING 🙂

from the prospect/customer’s perspective….

Now that you know YOUR objective and questions, switch your focus

what do THEY get out of answering your question?


Think about it, if a friend calls up and asks “what are you doing this weekend” don’t you start to think about the implications of your answer? Perhaps they…

  • want to go away and need someone to watch their kids
  • need help re-roofing their house
  • would like to do something FUN together

In their heads, your prospects & customers are asking themselves the SAME kind of thing!

  • worry about how the answer will hurt them
  • wonder why the heck you care about that
  • don’t want to sound stupid, but don’t know the answer
  • etc…

Make sure you help them to know the result THEY will get having this conversation with you.

Take our objective to find out what Bob’s role is. Here are things I’ve heard AND hated (along with why)…..

“are you the person who makes decisions on ____________”
(yeah because if I’m NOT the decision maker, I love to broadcast that to random people I don’t know)

TRANSLATE: “Bob I’m curious – to make sure I do a good job for YOU, what part do you play when the group is deciding on _______________”

“Bob what do you do?” (at this point I’m thinking, seriously zero homework)

TRANSLATE: “Bob, every company I work with seems to have broken out responsibilities a little differently; what does a typical day look like for you?”

Get the idea? Make it easy for them to figure out how answering your question might help them. How is being in the conversation a good thing from their perspective.

Before you pick up the phone and make your next call – think about the result YOU want, choose a single objective plus make sure you bring the prospect/customer along with you (NOT along for a ride).


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